In a few years’ time when we discuss British bands that were criminally underrated, The People The Poet are bound to come up. Not only was this Welsh mob’s debut full-length, 2013’s ‘The Narrator’, a near-flawless example of layered, emotionally-loaded rock, it was made all the more personal by having its songs based on letters and stories from fans.
New EP ‘Paradise Closed’ follows a similar route in its execution, burning white-hot with a burgeoning intensity thanks to its dense composition and frontman Leon Stanford’s gorgeously gnarled, gravelly vocals. ‘Club 27’ takes its gentle openings and inflates them into a real indie epic, while opener ‘Happy Being Miserable’ takes a more visceral Springsteen-meets-Pearl Jam route.
It’s a release built on the foundations of the most lush grandiosity, but never feels too self-important, and still manages to maintain a level of intimacy. There’s an almost overbearing emotion to the likes of ‘Same Heart’ and ‘Needle In A Haystack’ that makes every moment feel like a true work of art, and coupled with the swathes of multi-layered vocals and delayed guitars, and it’s a truly immersive listen.
It all makes ‘Paradise Closed’ a truly excellent EP that packs in more dynamism and and heavy-hearted sentiments than most entire albums. It’ll be a borderline miracle if it sees The People The Poet pick up the mainstream adulation they’ve always deserved, but that we even have a band as brilliant and poignant as this is cause for celebration in itself.
‘Paradise Closed EP’ by The People The Poet is out now on Beeline Records.
Words by Luke Nuttall (@nuttall_luke)